On December 27, 2020, President Trump approved the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. This is a $2.3 trillion bill that combines the $900 billion stimulus relief for the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States with a $1.4 trillion spending bill that prevents a government shutdown. The bill will provide stimulus payments of $600 for individuals and $2400 for families of four. It will also provide $286 billion for unemployment relief. Workers receiving unemployment benefits through March 14, 2021 will be provided an additional $300 per week.
The act also provides funding for the supplemental nutrition assistance program (SNAP). There is a temporary 15% increase extended until the end of January 2021. This excludes any unemployment benefits provided from being considered as income for eligibility purposes. It also provides college students access to SNAP benefits by waiving requirements that apply to only students.
Lastly, this bill covers $2 million for a second paycheck protection program (PPP) loan. However the new paycheck protection program will have more restrictions than the first. It’ll be restricted to companies who only have fewer than 300 employees, have used their full previous PPP Loan, and have proof that they’ve had a 25% revenue drop between the fourth quarters of 2019 and 2020. PPP proceeds were previously intended for rent, covered mortgage interests and utilities in order to qualify for 100% forgiveness. However, the act covered worker protection cost, property damage, supplier cost, and operation expenditures. Although these proceeds are not taxable, the expenses paid with the loan will be tax-deductible.
Photo via Flickr by Tom Lohdan